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Tools for Entrepreneurs: Forming the Right Kind of Entity. What is customer development? When we build products, we use a methodology.

What is customer development?

For software, we have many - you can enjoy a nice long list on Wikipedia. But too often when it's time to think about customers, marketing, positioning, or PR, we delegate it to "marketroids" or "suits. " Many of us are not accustomed to thinking about markets or customers in a disciplined way. We know some products succeed and others fail, but the reasons are complex and the unpredictable. We're easily convinced by the argument that all we need to do is "build it and they will come. " What's wrong with this picture? Steve Blank has devoted many years now to trying to answer that question, with a theory he calls Customer Development.

You can learn about customer development, and quite a bit more, in Steve's book The Four Steps to the Epiphany. Some notable bloggers have made efforts to overcome these obstacles. Still, I feel the need to add my two cents. Get out of the building. The Beginner's Guide to Startup Analytics. Becoming an entrepreneur is like stepping onto the most intimidating roller-coaster in the world.

The Beginner's Guide to Startup Analytics

There are ups, there are downs and there are unexpected turns. The Legal Issues You Need To Know If You're Launching A Startup In 2017. Thinking of finally launching that startup in this year?

The Legal Issues You Need To Know If You're Launching A Startup In 2017

You'd be in for a ride even if the next 12 months weren't shaping up to be as change-filled as it appears they might. Crowdfunding laws are evolving, and the regulatory landscape is already shifting as the Trump Administration gets underway. Fast Company asked startup expert and lawyer Christina Oshan, cofounder and managing member of the J+O Firm in Brooklyn, for tips on forming a company, financing, and other things you may not have thought of—but will definitely need to if you're getting a business off the ground in 2017. How to Start a Startup. Dave Cappillo: 8 Mistakes Founders Make. A value creation checklist. This project you’re working on, the new business or offering, what sort of value does it create?

A value creation checklist

Who is it for? The Pitch Is Dead. Long Live the Conversation. Some months ago, I was at a conference about social innovation or something, and a young woman came up and asked if we could talk.

The Pitch Is Dead. Long Live the Conversation.

I said “Of course!” And with that, she launched into a staccato pitch about some really useful thing she was doing in some place that really needed it. My nametag said “foundation,” and so of course she was doing what she is supposed to do, but I have the attention span of a four year old, and the one-way flow of information sent my thoughts skittering into the weeds. Performing a Project Premortem. Executive Summary Reprint: F0709A In a premortem, team members assume that the project they are planning has just failed—as so many do—and then generate plausible reasons for its demise.

Performing a Project Premortem

Those with reservations may speak freely at the outset, so that the project can be improved rather than autopsied. Projects fail at a spectacular rate. One reason is that too many people are reluctant to speak up about their reservations during the all-important planning phase. Research conducted in 1989 by Deborah J. How to write a killer deck, and get funded. Immad Akhund is the CEO and co-founder of Heyzap, the leading Social Games distribution platform beyond Facebook.

How to write a killer deck, and get funded

Heyzap has raised $3.5 million to date and is Immad’s third Startup, He will be writing a series of articles for Lessons Learned. I have advised a number of Web companies on their way to raise money. I am often mentally ‘face-palming’ as they stagger through their initial pitch. Helping entrepreneurs is something I am passionate about. Knowing how to comfortably raise funding removes the distracting worry of money. The key preparation material that most people create for pitching potential investors is a presentation deck. The two most important aspects of pitching are: 1) being confident and 2) conveying a consistent powerful story. The ‘Facebook Class’ Built Apps, and Fortunes. Photo STANFORD, Calif.

The ‘Facebook Class’ Built Apps, and Fortunes

ALL right, class, here’s your homework assignment: Devise an app. Get people to use it. Repeat. That was the task for some Stanford students in the fall of 2007, in what became known here as the “ Class.” Startup = Growth. September 2012 A startup is a company designed to grow fast.

Startup = Growth

Being newly founded does not in itself make a company a startup. Nor is it necessary for a startup to work on technology, or take venture funding, or have some sort of "exit. " The only essential thing is growth. Everything else we associate with startups follows from growth. Ten Rules for Web Startups. #1: Be NarrowFocus on the smallest possible problem you could solve that would potentially be useful.

Ten Rules for Web Startups

Most companies start out trying to do too many things, which makes life difficult and turns you into a me-too. Focusing on a small niche has so many advantages: With much less work, you can be the best at what you do. Small things, like a microscopic world, almost always turn out to be bigger than you think when you zoom in. You can much more easily position and market yourself when more focused. The cult of the NDA. To all those entrepreneurs with innovative, unique business ideas who want to capitalize on them before someone else does, I have one piece of advice: Get over it. Riding the tech boom of the late 1990's, there were an immense number of tech companies founded with thousands of innovative, smart new ideas. As a research analyst at an investment bank during that time, I personally visited with hundreds of these young companies, and even invested personally in a handful, either directly or through my firm's venture fund.

50 Time Saving Tips for Small Businesses. As a small business owner, free time is probably not something you have a whole lot of. What you do have a lot of are tasks to accomplish and deadlines to meet. So how can you better accomplish these tasks in a shorter amount of time? Below are 50 time saving tips to help you save time throughout your workday. 1. Set Goals. Startup Advice and Strategy. Free Online Business Strategy Tools from Kaihan Krippendorff. Startup Library. By Us How to Start a Startup.

Build something users love, and spend less than you make. Startups in 13 Sentences. Above all, understand your users. Hiring is Obsolete. 5 Reasons Why You Will Remain A Wantrepreneur. Rahul Varshneya is the co-founder of Arkenea Technologies and a mobile strategy advisor. He can be contacted via Twitter @rahulvarshneya. Aspiring entrepreneurs often don’t even start up. The reasons are aplenty, but if you can get over these five, you have got a chance to start your first venture. You have it in you to start your own venture… or so you think. Starting a venture requires much more than an idea.

The truth is that there are hundreds and thousands of aspiring entrepreneurs who think they have a winning idea, but never manage to put it into action. Here are five reasons that are stopping them, or YOU from starting up. 1. 7 Reasons Why Your Startup Will Fail (And How to Soften the Blow) Rahul Varshneya is the co-creator of, a platform that helps startups grow their business through social media. If you’re going to start up, you are bound to fail. This is not a primer to make sure you succeed, as there are many factors that can contribute to failure. But these are the biggest reasons why most startups fail. When you start up, ensure that you overcome all of these seven reasons which will increase the chances of success by multifold.

Bill Gross: The single biggest reason why startups succeed. Startup Post-Mortems Offer All Sorts Of Surprising Lessons. Predictable Failures. The economist Scott Shane, in his book “The Illusions of Entrepreneurship,” … says … failed entrepreneurs … violate all kids of established principles of new-business formation. New-business success is clearly correlated with the size of initial capitalization. When to Quit a Side Hustle.

It’s Not the People You Know. It’s Where You Are. Why-most-start-ups-fail. Why do some start-ups succeed while similar start-ups with similar products languish and die? The difference is in the quality of their sales and marketing, according to Gerhard Gschwandtner, publisher of Selling Power magazine. 6-avoidable-mistakes-entrepreneurs-make. Being an entrepreneur is difficult enough without falling prey to easily avoidable problems, according to Jeff Busgang, whose career spans starting companies on his won to funding them as a venture capitalist at Flybridge Capital Partners. Here are the six common errors he identified, along with suggestions for avoiding them: The New Psychology of Business Models.

Tom Hulme - Visualise Your Business Model In 15 Minutes Flat. Resource Index (Canvas) Start Your Own Business: 50 Things You'll Need to Do. Forget about generating billions: Why entrepreneurs should create $1,000 startups. Walter Chen is the founder and CEO of iDoneThis, the easiest way to share and celebrate what you get done at work, every day. On his downtime, he blogs about management, entrepreneurship, and happiness on the iDoneThis blog. Most entrepreneurs dream about building the next big billion-dollar company. After all, who doesn’t want to be the next Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg? It’s a fair aspiration, but oftentimes, the Apple, Google, and Facebook-shaped stars in their eyes end up clouding their vision. Getting To $100M+ Revenue: Understanding The 3 Phases Of A Startup. Mitchell Harper is the co-founder and co-CEO of Bigcommerce.

He tweets at @mitchellharper. Peter Thiel: Competition Is for Losers. How to Know You Have a Good Startup Idea: 5 Questions. You've thought up this hazy, partially-defined, intangible thing, that might or might not be a real product one day. Great Ideas Are Worthless Without Strong Execution  8 Steps to Launch an Idea, in Just a Few Hours. Want to Start a Company? 5 Questions to Know You're Ready. Theshipitjournal.pdf (application/pdf Object) Angel Investor Esther Dyson: 'There Are Too Many Start-Ups' 5 Steps for Building a Great Startup Team. Why You Don't Need To Know How To Code To Start A Tech Company.

8 Crucial Elements of Startup Success. Forget The Mission Statement. What's Your Mission Question? Tell a four-word story. — Design story. Great Leaders Know How to Reframe a Story. This Year Make a Manifesto vs Resolution. 15 Steps to Start your Own Tech Business: Part 1. 17. Acid Test for Entrepreneurs. How Funding Works - Splitting The Equity With Investors - Infographic. Back of a Napkin. Scaling startups – Chad Dickerson's blog. 8 tips for creating the perfect pitch deck (from someone who's raised $75M) The Pyramid Principle — Lessons from McKinsey. Porter's Five Forces - Problem Solving Techniques from MindTools. The Five Competitive Forces That Shape Strategy.

The Value Net Model - Strategy Skills Training From